No excuse for late return

No excuse for late return

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The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is reminding taxpayers that there is only one month left to lodge their own tax returns.

Taxpayers must lodge their own tax returns using the ATO’s online service myTax by October 31 otherwise they might incur penalties.

ATO assistant commissioner Kath Anderson said that more than 2.5 million people have already lodged their own returns via myTax with another 5.2 million lodging through a tax agent.

She said she expects millions more this month.

“The upcoming deadline shouldn’t be cause for concern though,” she said.

“The online services make it easier thane ever.”

Ms Anderson said agents were able to lodge taxpayers’ returns after October 31 only if the taxpayer was in the agent’s book before then.

“This is especially important to remember,” she said.

“Especially if you are using an agent for the first time or a different agent this year.”

Ms Anderson has urged taxpayers not to put off doing a tax return if they expect to have a debt.

“We know some people put off lodging because they think they’ll owe money, and they don’t realise that the payment will be due on 21 November regardless of when they lodge,” she said.

“We have ways to help you if you think you may have difficulties paying your tax debt, but you still need to lodge on time.”

The ATO have released a number of excuses taxpayers have used for lodging late.

Some of them include ‘my ex-wife burnt everything belonging to me including my tax returns,’ ‘my paperwork flew out the car window when I was on my way to see the accountant,’ and ‘my account has gone to prison but he’s working on it but it’s taking longer than normal because he can’t access a computer.’

Ms Anderson said if taxpayers need assistance they should contact the ATO as soon as possible.

For more information visit ato.gov.au.